evo xi

R.I.P. Mitsubishi Evo?

Could an offhand comment foretell the end of the Mitsubishi Evo lineup?

Autocar recently sat down with Mitsubishi Global Product Director Gayu Eusegi, who after a long talk about Mitsubishi’s upcoming electric vehicles, said, “[The Lancer Evolution X will be the last Evo]. There is still a demand for [the car], but we must stop. Our influence now is EV technology.”

Mitsubishi has struggled for a long time to have an identity, especially in the United States. Until 1999 Mitsubishi was known primarily for its sportiness with the trifecta of its Evo, 3000GT and Eclipse models.

However in 2000, the 3000GT was dropped and the Eclipse became nothing more then a sorority-mobile; leaving the Evo as the sole bright spot in Mitsubishi’s lineup.

While Mitsubishi does need to find a brand identity, dropping the Evo can’t help. Mr. Eusegi even said himself that there is still a demand for the car. Getting rid of a car that people still clamor for can’t be a winning strategy.

If this really is the end, then 2013 when the current model cycle is up will be the end of an era.